Construction workers must understand the many forms worksite hazards take. That way, they know how to protect themselves and others from unnecessary harm.
Eastern Kentucky University explains environmental hazards common on construction sites. Proper knowledge keeps workers safe and helps determine whether employer negligence played a part in sustained injuries.
Construction jobs involving refurbishment, demolition or groundwork may expose workers to biological hazards such as mold, animal droppings, viruses and fungi. If someone becomes exposed to water contaminated by animal droppings, the person could suffer respiratory issues that could lead to death.
Liquids, corrosives, vapors and fumes represent chemical hazards. Workers exposed to such hazards may absorb them through their skin, ingest them or inhale them. Worksites must have proper protocols in place to recognize potential chemical hazards and protect employee health. Besides proper safety training, construction companies should use safety labels on dangerous chemicals and safety data sheets.
Workers do not have to come into direct contact with a hazard for it to harm them. Examples of unseen hazards include exposure to extreme temperatures, radiation, ultraviolet rays and loud noises that could lead to hearing loss.
Construction workers may suffer falls or burns after receiving an electric shock. One of the main electrical hazards on worksites is power cables. Workers could touch overhead or underground power cables or come too close to power lines. Employees must also learn how to handle power tools and machinery safely to protect themselves from avoidable harm.
Employers must adhere to the latest OSHA standards to protect their workers. Oversights and irresponsibility could lead to unnecessary danger and employee injuries.